The latest Conn Smythe Trophy odds, per online bookmaker Bovada:
Henrik Lundqvist (NYR) 5/2
Anze Kopitar (LAK) 4/1
Drew Doughty (LAK) 4/1
Jonathan Quick (LAK) 11/2
Martin St. Louis (NYR) 7/1
Marian Gaborik (LAK) 7/1
Jeff Carter (LAK) 8/1
Derek Stepan (NYR) 30/1
Justin Williams (LAK) 30/1
Brad Richards (NYR) 30/1
Ryan McDonagh (NYR) 30/1
Rick Nash (NYR) 50/1
Mike Richards (LAK) 50/1
Dustin Brown (LAK) 50/1
Tyler Toffoli (LAK) 50/1
The consensus opinion is that Lundqvist will need to be outstanding if his New York Rangers are to upset the Los Angeles Kings. He’s already been excellent in these playoffs, with a 2.03 goals-against average and .928 save percentage. St. Louis, Stepan, and McDonagh each have 13 points, a three-way tie for the most on the team. (McDonagh at 30/1 might have some value.)
It the Kings end up winning, Quick would have to be beyond outstanding to capture his second Conn Smythe. He enters the series with a mediocre .906 save percentage, a far cry from the .946 mark he registered in 2012, when the Kings won their first Cup in franchise history. Which is why Kopitar and Doughty are the co-favorites from L.A, not the goalie. The former leads all playoff scorers with 24 points, while the latter has averaged 27:50 of ice time, tallying 16 points of his own.
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.